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Mega-Majesty, Coming Down, to Us

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“Mega-Majesty, Coming Down, to Us”

Luke 9:37-44

In the passage we considered last week we saw Jesus transfigured. Luke says the appearance of His face was altered and his robe became white and glistening. We get, it seems, a glimpse of the glory Christ shares with God the Father in Heaven. Matthew said His face was shining like the sun –

and He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light. (Matthew 17:2 NKJ)

Yet, in the passage we are considering today, His glory is veiled again. His face is not said to be shining when He is greeted by the multitude or cried to by the poor father whose son is demon possessed! The mountain-top majesty gives way to the site of a poor boy foaming from the mouth and rolling on the ground!

Oh how quick the world, the flesh and the Devil are to spit in Jesus’ face and attempt to take away the glory and joy we might feel in church and replace them with REAL WORLD TROUBLE!

Yet, even here, when Jesus own disciples were not up to the task, Jesus amazing comes through!

I. There are problems beyond ordinary ministry and beyond the best of mere men –

38 Suddenly a man from the multitude cried out, saying, "Teacher, I implore You, look on my son, for he is my only child. 39 "And behold, a spirit seizes him, and he suddenly cries out; it convulses him so that he foams at the mouth, and it departs from him with great difficulty, bruising him. 40 "So I implored Your disciples to cast it out, but they could not."

1. The scene Peter, James and John witnessed as they descended the Mount of Transfiguration must have hit them like mud thrown at Jesus’ bright white robe –

A. Mark tells Jesus’ other disciples were caught up in a heated argument with the teachers of the law –

And when He came to the disciples, He saw a great multitude around them, and scribes disputing with them. (Mark 9:14 NKJ)

B. If we sum up all the Gospel accounts we realize Jesus, Peter, James and John were greeted with a very pitiful picture –

When the demon seizes the boy (Mark 9:18; Luke 9:39), the child cries, foams at the mouth and is bruised as the demon fights leaving him (Luke 9:39). He grinds his teeth and becomes rigged (like a board) (Mark 9:18). Many times he had been cast into fire or water by the evil spirit (Matthew 17:15), and he is covered with scars. As it seems, the evil spirit has made him deaf and dumb / or the demon itself is deaf and dumb --- perhaps explaining part of the difficulty Jesus disciple had? (Mark 9:25).

2. This is all happening in front of a large crowd – Luke 9:37. They must have all witnessed the fact that Jesus’ disciples could NOT cast this demon out – Luke 9:40

II. Jesus speaks the sad truth to this circumstance –

41 Then Jesus answered and said, "O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you and bear with you? Bring your son here."

1. Who is Jesus speaking to with these harsh words? His disciples? The father? The crowd? ALL? I think all!

A. Mark’s Gospel relates the father’s weak faith –

22 "And often he has thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us." 23 Jesus said to him, "If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes." 24 Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, "Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!" (Mark 9:22-24 NKJ)

B. Matthew’s Gospel speaks of the disciples lack of faith –

19 Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, "Why could we not cast it out?" 20 So Jesus said to them, "Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, `Move from here to there,' and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. 21 "However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting." (Matthew 17:19-21 NKJ)

C. Yet Jesus’ wording here relates to all Israel -

“O faithless and perverse generation …” :41

"They have corrupted themselves; They are not His children, Because of their blemish: A perverse and crooked generation. (Deuteronomy 32:5 NKJ)

And He said: `I will hide My face from them, I will see what their end will be, For they are a perverse generation, Children in whom is no faith. (Deuteronomy 32:20 NKJ)

2. We do not typically equate lack of faith with perversity but Jesus does! He uses this strong, not politically correct word to describe even His own disciples! It speaks to His beyond 20/20 spiritual view of our depravity!

3. The problem here with this boy and I would add, really all the PROBLEMS we have even in the world today are the result of sin and lack of faith!

14 I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and indeed, all is vanity and grasping for the wind. 15 What is crooked cannot be made straight, and what is lacking cannot be numbered. (Ecclesiastes 1:14-15 NKJ)

4. Yet Jesus also adds –

21 "However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting." (Matthew 17:21 NKJ)

Certain demons, certain circumstances are above others in the difficulty they present, they REQUIRE PRAYER and FASTING!

III. Our glorious Lord Jesus reaches down into this dreadfully sin-filled world, to save us –

42 And as he was still coming, the demon threw him down and convulsed him. Then Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit, healed the child, and gave him back to his father. 43 And they were all amazed at the majesty of God. But while everyone marveled at all the things which Jesus did, He said to His disciples, 44 "Let these words sink down into your ears, for the Son of Man is about to be betrayed into the hands of men." Luke 9:42-44

One of my favorite movies is Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom!

The reason I like it? It is filled with sermon illustrations!

One of the best of those is when Indy and a little boy named Short-round are trapped in a death trap. Willie, a beautiful, prissy actress is the only one in a position to save them. She hears them screaming but does not really know what is wrong. In order to save them she has to reach into the most slime filled, wicked-insect infested hole you can imagine and grab a lever that would reverse the trap!

1. In order to save us, our glorious Lord had to reach down into our dreadful, sin-filled world!

2. He came down from the Mount of Transfiguration much like He did from Heaven for this purpose.

3. He is Majestic and people were amazed and marveled even at His work in the worst situations – Luke 9:43

3168 μεγαλειότης megaleiotes {meg-al-i-ot'-ace}

Meaning: 1) greatness, magnificence 1a) of the majesty of God 1b) of the visible splendour of the divine majesty as it appeared in the transfiguration of Christ

Usage: AV - mighty power 1, magnificence 1, majesty 1; 3

The majesty of God, seen in the healing of this boy is the same majesty Peter uses in reference to Jesus’ transfiguration –

16 For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased," (2Peter 1:16-17 ESV)

The same majestic glory Peter attributes to Jesus on top of the Mount of transfiguration, the people attribute to Jesus as He casts a wicked demon out of a poor boy!

4. Yet, Jesus will even go further to save us from our sins, He says –

44 "Let these words sink down into your ears, for the Son of Man is about to be betrayed into the hands of men." Luke 9:44

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